Brie: First Swimming Lesson (and What We Can Do to Familiarise our Child with the Pool)
Brie is now 5 years and 8 months old.
And we feel it’s time that she learns how to swim!
Here’s a quick clip of her milestone, Brie’s first swimming lesson 🙂
To us, the age of 5.5 – 6yo is a nice age to start learning how to swim, as we feel at this age, the child can understand instructions better and have better coordination skills.
“Then what did you do BEFORE the child learns how to swim?’, someone asked.
Well, simply let them have loads of waterplay fun? =)
She’s taught again and again about the danger of playing near the deep pool without any adult supervisionWhen Brie was less than 1 yo, it could be as simple as playing by the pool side with us by her side.
When she’s between 1yo – 3yo, she’d play in the children pool with a float jacket on (still needs close supervision though as at this stage, kids often panic and don’t know how to get back up and stand after falling, which can lead to drowning).
If she chose to sit and just play by the shallow part of a pool, she could be not wearing her floaties, but we’d be watching her closely.
[Brie at 2 years, 3 months]
As Brie gets bigger, she plays in the children pool without any float jacket on, but in terms of water safety, she’s taught again and again about the danger of playing near the deep pool without any adult supervision.
When Brie was 5yo, she felt brave enough to swim and paddle in the deep pool alone, with her float jacket on all the time of course.
(Before she turned 5yo, she didn’t dare to go into the deep pool by herself)
She tried putting her whole face underwater for a tenth of a secondTo slowly let her feel comfortable about putting her head underwater, we ask her (in a casual play-a-game mood) to dip her head underwater for a split second. She refused at first. Then after some time (like a few weeks or months later!), she tried putting her whole face underwater for a tenth of a second =) A few months later, she dared putting her whole head under water for half a second. Yay! Haha. Progress. There’s progress! =D
[4yo Anya and 1.5yo Vai]
I guess, 3 things that we parents should do (when we want our child to slowly be familiar with the pool) are:
1. Introduce the child to the pool ‘early’. To me, anytime after 9 months definitely is fine =)
(eg. Carry the baby and walk around the pool with you. ‘Early’ doesn’t mean we have to bring them to those ‘specially-made for babies’ tubs =)
2. Watch the child closely (especially the young ones) when they’re in the children pool, but relax too at the same time. Our ‘worried looks and comments’ will only make them feel uneasy and scared.
3. We parents should enjoy some water play, too. Even if we can’t swim, we can sit by the pool with our feet in the waters? =)
Here are some of my older blog posts on swimming lessons:
When did you start sending your child to swimming lessons?